Basically pasta, tomato sauce and salad, just done properly 🙂
This is quite a mix of cuisines, with italian, tunisian and asian influences all playing a part.
We are always of the opinion that normal, “boring” food can be the most spectacular if you do it properly – its the exquisite recipes that make it into our everyday lives and then get simplified and fast-foodified.
This is not a quick meal, but its a social business, rolling out pasta while the tomato sauce reduces, and it’s not as much effort as you think it is. Pour yourself a glass of wine and think of it as therapy.
Wholewheat pasta with harissa bacon relish and an asian gooseberry salad
- 1 1/2 cups wholewheat flour can use normal flour, but we like the nuttiness of wholewheat.
- 4 medium eggs or 3 large
- olive oil
- bacon or ham, sliced use as much as you want. The more the merrier 🙂
- 1 tsp cumin
- 1 tsp coriander
- 1 tsp caraway
- 800g super ripe red tomatoes, grated tomato quality is key here, use properly ripe tomatoes.
- 2 medium onions, grated
- 3 garlic cloves, crushed
- 1 sachet tomato paste (80g)
- 2 chopped green or red chillies
- 1 tbsp sugar
- 1 tsp dried basil
- 1 tsp dried oregano
Asian gooseberry salad
- 1 onion, halved and cut into wedges
- 1/4-1/3 butternut, sliced into 1/2 cm slices.
- red cabbage, very thinly sliced
- 1/4 cucumber - cut into thin lengthwise strips with a vegetable peeler. Leave the core of the cucumber if you don't want your salad watery.
- 1/2 cup cape gooseberries, halved Cape gooseberries are known as Physalis, if you can't get them other gooseberries or tomatillos will work.
- rocket (lots)
- 1 head baby gem lettuce
- 2 tbsp soya sauce
- 2 tbsp sweet fruit vinegar If you don't have, mix regular vinegar 50:50 with orange juice.
- 1 tsp sesame oil
- 1 tsp fish sauce
- Preheat the oven to 230C.
- Start with the pasta. Make a well in the flour on a clean surface and break the eggs into the well, along with a half a teaspoon of salt. Work from the inside out and then knead like mad for about 10 minutes. This is quite a lot stiffer than a bread dough, and it must be around the consistency of your earlobe. Add a bit more flour or some water to get the consistency just right. Putting oil on your hands helps to keep them clean. Cover with clingwrap and leave for at least half an hour, preferably 45 minutes.
- Once the pasta is resting, throw the butternut and onion together with some olive oil, salt and pepper and spread out on a baking tray. Bake until soft and tasty - about 30 minutes.
- Fry the sliced bacon or ham until crispy, then remove and put one side. Add the spices with some oil and fry for a minute or so until sizzling and fragrant, but don't let them burn!Add the grated onion, sugar, chilli and 1tsp salt and fry for 10 mins, to let the onion get sweet and sticky. Add the rest of the relish ingredients with half a cup of water/white wine/stock, bring to the boil then reduce the heat to a bare simmer, cover and let it do it's thing for like 30-40 minutes. Taste and season with sugar (if too acidic), salt and pepper before serving.
- Mix the salad dressing ingredients together.Add the salad ingredients together, toss right before serving.
- Bring a big pot of salted water to a rolling boil.Roll out the pasta dough and spaghettify in the pasta machine, or slice with a pizza cutter or knife if you don't have one. Sprinkle and toss each batch of sliced pasta with flour to stop them from sticking together while you make the rest. Add the pasta and separate in the water with a pasta ladle, bring to the boil and cook for 2 minutes or so, until al dente. Fresh pasta cooks quickly, keep an eye on in and don't let it turn to mush. Drain and toss with olive oil.
- Serve the food immediately after cooking the pasta. Goes well with a crisp dry white wine.